The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (BATFE, aka the ATF) has directed the Ultimate Training Munitions company to cease all sales to civilians in the United States, leading the company to announce it will no longer sell to civilians.
For those who don’t know, UTM is one of the primary suppliers of non-lethal training ammunition and is the other dominant brand on the market for such ammunition besides Simunition products. Civilians who participate in Force-On-Force classes using simulated rounds will be heavily affected.
ATF Forces UTM To Cease Civilian Sales
In a recent press release, the Ultimate Training Munitions company (based in the UK) announced the cessation of civilian sales in the United States at the direction of the BATFE.
The ATF is aggressively curtailing sales of imported ammunition, with embargoes on ammunition from Russia and other Eastern European countries. For instance, the national supply of 5.45mm ammunition was almost entirely wiped out and remains critically low for anyone with a rifle of that caliber.
UTM not only manufactured training ammunition but also firearm conversions for select pistols and modern rifles, which allowed the safe use of training ammunition without destroying working guns.
Law enforcement and military customers of UTM in the United States are not affected by the directive, which specifically only forbade the sale of UTM products to civilians.
‘Tis For Me, But Not For Thee
The prohibition on UTM ammunition – and any other products – is puzzling, as they manufacture marking rounds for training purposes, not standard ammunition. Their products are not lethal (except possibly for serious misuse) and are a training tool for FOF and CQB schools and training courses all over the world.
However, the nature of the ban is another example of “tis for me, but not for thee” just as other forms of firearm legislation, such as “assault weapon” and “high capacity magazine” bans in states that do not apply such restrictions to law enforcement.
The regulators have no problem with the product for them but see no reason why us peasants should have it, which is ridiculous. Someone explain how defending one’s home is not CQB; we’ll wait.
All hope is not necessarily lost for UTM. Besides their manufacturing base in England, they also have facilities in New Jersey and Texas, leaving the possibility open for US-based manufacturing to resume at some point in the future, much like Beretta and other gun companies of foreign origin.
Much like “import cars” being more American-made than those from the Big 3 (far more of a Toyota Tundra is made domestically than a Ford F-150, oddly enough), there is a way the gun and ammo industries can operate here…but time will tell if that’s what UTM chooses to do.
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